Biological survey of Kangaroo Hills and Calooli Timber Reserves, Coolgardie, Western Australia
Bamford, M., Davies, S.J.J.F. and Ladd, P.G. (1991) Biological survey of Kangaroo Hills and Calooli Timber Reserves, Coolgardie, Western Australia.
The Kangaroo Hills and Calooli Reserves occupy 9721 hectares just south of Coolgardie between lat. 30° 58' 45" - 31° 05' 00" and long. 121° 01' 45" - 121° 10' 00". The area lies in the Coolgardie Botanical District and has rainfall of 256 mm/year with a slight winter maximum. Temperatures are hot in summer and relatively mild in winter, although minima down to -5°C may occur.
The landforms range from gilgaied clay flats and broad alluvial or erosional valleys to relatively rugged greenstone hills and small areas of rounded to flat granite outcrop. Sand sheets, sometimes in association with laterite occur in both reserves. The reserves have a diverse topography within a relatively small area.
The vegetation was systematically sampled at 19 sites and plants were collected throughout the reserves. Over 250 species and subspecies were identified. Several species of restricted occurrence were found and one species of Acacia (A. duriuscula) was collected for the first time since 1902. However there were no declared rare flora identified. Stipa blackii (a South Australian species) was recorded for the first time in Western Australia.
Nine vegetation units were recognised, three complex units for particular landforms and six woodland or open woodland associations dominated by eucalypts or acacias.
Floristically the area shows affinities with both the Eremaean and south west of Western Australia, but it is more closely related to the mesic south west than the drier inland.
Two amphibian, 32 reptile and 18 mammal (9 introduced) species were recorded in the reserves with pitfall trapping at 12 and Elliott trapping at six sites. The assemblage of reptile species in particular was transitional between the south-west and the Eremaean provinces. Of the landform units identified in the reserves, a few species were confined to and some were absent from the sandplain, but otherwise the local distribution of species was independent of landform. No rare or endangered species were found.
The avifauna of the Kangaroo Hills and Calooli Reserves was surveyed at nine sites in each of April, July and November. The species included representatives of south-western (Bassian) and arid (Eremaean) faunal provinces. Twelve species of passerines were amongst those described as confined to undisturbed native vegetation by Kitchener et al. (1982) during surveys of the Western Australian wheatbelt. The diversity of the vegetation enabled many species of locally nomadic birds to remain in the reserve throughout the year, although they used different parts of it at different seasons.
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